Understanding Chinese Culture

Sung Dynasty Star ChartThe perfect expression of a Daoist practice is simultaneously resolving and inspiring. Inappropriate conduct leaves things (qi) unresolved. Appropriate conduct resolves things (zhengqi). Unresolved ancestors manifest through the actions of those still living -- their descendants. Thus, we can see religious merit or gongfu, as the practice of resolving our ancestors inappropriate conduct through our own appropriate conduct. (Taoism and the Arts of China)(Schipper p.49)
The primary purpose of a Daoist funeral is to bring resolution to the recently dead.  It's as if they were not quite dead yet.

We in the West find these propositions difficult to grasp because we see the universe in terms of independent creation, causation and agency. The notion of qi presupposes that all events/things are mutually self-recreating.

Roger Ames makes some salient points about the nature of Chinese thinking. We says that are always participants in the unraveling of traditional Chinese subjects, never 'objective observers.'
From the Chinese perspective, agents cannot be decontextualized and superordinated in any final sense; to identify and isolate an agent [re: divine creator] is an abstraction which removes it from the concrete reality of flux, exaggerating its continuity at the expense of its change. Since change is interior to all situations, human beings do not act upon a world that is independent of them. Rather, they are interdependent in the world in which they reside, simultaneously shaping it and being shaped by it. Order is always reflexive, subject and object, are not contraries, but interchangeable aspects of a single category in which any distinction between the agent and the action, between subject and object, between what does and what is done, is simply a matter of perspective. (Ames 1998, p.20-21)